Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Veneration of Mary Debate with William Albrecht (aka GNRHead)

This is a debate that was conducted on 25 April 2009 between TurretinFan and William Albrecht (aka GNRHead) on the topic of the Veneration of Mary and its Biblical Support (or lack thereof).

At some later point I would like to provide some further comments on this debate. For now, however, here it is for your listening pleasure. It is in five parts on YouTube, but hopefully the "playlist" feature will permit you to play them sequentially.

UPDATE: Lane has posted the entire debate as a single YouTube video here (link).


natamllc said...

I am making comments as I listen to this debate.

My first comment addresses something I found interesting with regard to Mr. Albrecht when commenting on the verse, Luke 1:49.

Mr. Albrecht does not "finish" the verse and point to the "fact" Mary adds "and holy is His name":

Luk 1:49 for he who is mighty has done great things for me, and holy is his name.

My next comment points to Jesus' own words in making a category of "special" recognition which goes beyond "just" Mary and includes the following group of "special" people:

Mat 13:16 But blessed are your eyes, for they see, and your ears, for they hear.
Mat 13:17 For truly, I say to you, many prophets and righteous people longed to see what you see, and did not see it, and to hear what you hear, and did not hear it.

Well, I guess I will lump myself in with those that come after all these folks Jesus refers to there at Matthew 13:16. While on my side of the Historical timeline I do not see anywhere in Scripture where Jesus singled out Mary over anyone in that special referred to special group of people. Jesus, when making the referral, was pointing to past Prophets and Righteous men. My point is this that I am on the other side of all these people who have gone on before my time, those of us that come after His Death, Burial and Resurrection and I too acknowledge what Jesus does there. If He wanted us to make a special acknowledgment of Mary, His mother of the flesh, wouldn't you think this would have been as good a time as any to do that seeing it clearly was on His mind to make a special distinction about them as to what they saw and heard? This group certainly saw and heard Mary but Jesus makes no special distinction about her among them. I believe I can say safely then that the RCC is over reaching the point about Mary's special status among all the Saints and making a point not made by Christ Himself when the point would have been most appropriate to have been made by God to mankind!

My next point is found with Paul's admonition to refute that this idea of the veneration of Mary is to be carried to every following generation. Paul exhorts that we are to pray for the following:

1Ti 2:1 First of all, then, I urge that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings be made for all people,
1Ti 2:2 for kings and all who are in high positions, that we may lead a peaceful and quiet life, godly and dignified in every way.
1Ti 2:3 This is good, and it is pleasing in the sight of God our Savior,
1Ti 2:4 who desires all people to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth.

Paul makes no mention of a "special place in our hearts to pray for Mary, the mother of Jesus. I find it even more of an emphasis being made by Paul when he goes further and specifically asks that prayers be made specific to his "mission" from God by those he was called to minister too and with:

Eph 6:18 praying at all times in the Spirit, with all prayer and supplication. To that end keep alert with all perseverance, making supplication for all the saints,
Eph 6:19 and also for me, that words may be given to me in opening my mouth boldly to proclaim the mystery of the gospel,
Eph 6:20 for which I am an ambassador in chains, that I may declare it boldly, as I ought to speak.

Now the important point to me that is heeded I suppose is this admonition is to be carried into every generation vested with the work of the Gospel and the idea is prayer is to be made on behalf of those upon who are the "current" "missionaries" in our day like Paul in his day. Nowhere does it suggest that we, in our generation, are to pray for Paul now or to Paul now or for Mary or to Mary. There is no need, neither is there any instructions left for True Believers to "pray" to or for Mary in this generation or coming generations.

What we do have in Scripture, as an admonition to "pray", is that in subsequent generations after the revelation was given, we are to pray to God about what is utmost before us currently. The revelation is found here:

Rev 5:8 And when he had taken the scroll, the four living creatures and the twenty-four elders fell down before the Lamb, each holding a harp, and golden bowls full of incense, which are the prayers of the saints.
Rev 5:9 And they sang a new song, saying, "Worthy are you to take the scroll and to open its seals, for you were slain, and by your blood you ransomed people for God from every tribe and language and people and nation,
Rev 5:10 and you have made them a kingdom and priests to our God, and they shall reign on the earth."

Now when you consider these next verses in light of those verses above from Rev. 5, one gets the idea that prayer is to made to the only One who can do something about our situation and the prayers being prayed are to Him and not to Mary. Note carefully that there is no mention of Mary being prayed too for any reason or that when we pray and live out our days, we should include a "veneration" of Mary in our daily prayer lives:

Joh 14:8 Philip said to him, "Lord, show us the Father, and it is enough for us."
Joh 14:9 Jesus said to him, "Have I been with you so long, and you still do not know me, Philip? Whoever has seen me has seen the Father. How can you say, 'Show us the Father'?
Joh 14:10 Do you not believe that I am in the Father and the Father is in me? The words that I say to you I do not speak on my own authority, but the Father who dwells in me does his works.
Joh 14:11 Believe me that I am in the Father and the Father is in me, or else believe on account of the works themselves.
Joh 14:12 "Truly, truly, I say to you, whoever believes in me will also do the works that I do; and greater works than these will he do, because I am going to the Father.
Joh 14:13 Whatever you ask in my name, this I will do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son.
Joh 14:14 If you ask me anything in my name, I will do it.

As was expected, I found Mr. Albrecht's remarks and questions to be "hollow", while I sensed a spirit in TF that was more "hallowing" both the God he serves and the sense of the importance of Reverence for the Scriptures while dealing with the errors coming out within the debate.

The Squirrel said...

I don't think he ever "got it" regarding Luke 1:48. A statement of fact is not a commandment. "People will always live in New York" is not equal to "All people must live in New York"

Good debate.


Nancy Danielson said...

You failed to mention the fact that by her Magnificat,(LK.1:46-55)Mary, "cooperated freely and in obedience of Faith with God's plan for our Salvation."-Catechism of the Catholic Church.

For that yes, Mary, who is full of Grace, will always be called Blessed.

Turretinfan said...

Nancy: I'm guessing Albrecht didn't mention that because you cannot possibly derive it from Scripture, and he was (for whatever reasons) limiting himself to Scripture.

In fact, quite to the contrary, when the Angel greeted her, Mary had already been blessed and highly favored by God. It was not dependent on her in any way "cooperating" with God, but rather on a gift that was given to her.


Nancy Danielson said...

Turretinfan, with all due Respect, if you can't see her 'Yes' in the "Song of Praise", perhaps you can see it here:

"Then Mary said, 'Here am I, the servant of the Lord; let it be with me according to your Word'."-Luke 1:38

Turretinfan said...


The question is not whether the word "yes" is there (obviously, it is not) or even whether Mary was for or against the issue (clearly she accepted the fact). The question is whether somehow Mary's acceptance of the fact = cooperation, which it plainly does not.